Dinosaurs are a varied group of animals from taxonomic, morphological and ecological standpoints. Birds, at over 10,700 living species, are among the most diverse group of vertebrates. Using fossil evidence, paleontologists have identified over 900 distinct genera and more than 1,000 different species of non-avian dinosaurs. Dinosaurs are represented on every continent by both extant species (birds) and fossil remains. Through the first half of the 20th century, before birds were recognized as dinosaurs, most of the scientific community believed dinosaurs to have been sluggish and cold-blooded. Most research conducted since the 1970s, however, has indicated that dinosaurs were active animals with elevated metabolisms and numerous adaptations for social interaction. Some were herbivorous, others carnivorous. Evidence suggests that all dinosaurs were egg-laying; and that nest-building was a trait shared by many dinosaurs, both avian and non-avian. (Full article...)
Daspletosaurus is closely related to the much larger and more recent Tyrannosaurus. Like most known tyrannosaurids, it was a multi-ton bipedalpredator equipped with dozens of large, sharp teeth. Daspletosaurus had the small forelimbs typical of tyrannosaurids, although they were proportionately longer than in other genera. It was probably similar in weight to a modern white rhinoceros or a small elephant.